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Report: Why Is GBV Relevant to Reproductive Health?

New IGWG Policy Brief, June 2010

Around the world, gender-based violence (GBV) is often viewed as a protection or legal rights issue, rather than a public health concern.

This two-page brief succinctly answers the question “Why Is GBV Relevant to Reproductive Health?” Produced for the IGWG by Population Reference Bureau and funded by USAID, the brief outlines the sheer magnitude of GBV and its impacts on many reproductive health outcomes, including unintended pregnancy, maternal and child health, and STIs/HIV.

It is a valuable resource for gender and development advocates making the case to policymakers as to why GBV is a public health matter they must address.

"Gender-based violence has gained prominence around the world as a grave violation of human and legal rights. But it is equally important that it be recognized, and addressed, as a prime barrier to reproductive health—a barrier that prevents women, families, and countries from achieving their full potential. This brief presents background on the frequency of gender-based violence and outlines the ways in which it is an impediment to health passed on from generation to generation."

To access the brief, go to http://www.prb.org/igwg_media/gbv-impediment-to-RH.pdf.

Comments

gunu_k's picture

IPV is reprehensible

Dear Jade,
thank you for the link to this informative note. I have learnt a new term - Intimate Partner Violence or IPV for something that I have loathed from the beginning. When women cannot trust even their intimate partners and must bear beating and other torture from them then how can they develop and live as human beings. What is most notable in this note as you have pointed out is that it has stressed on the connection between GBV and RH problems of women. My major work and research is in the area of RH and I have found that GBV is a serious impediment to women achieving RH. When women cant talk about their RH problems in the open for fear of censure and even physical chastisement then how can they solve them?

Subhadra Khaperde
India

jadefrank's picture

speaking, sharing, solving

Dearest Subhadra,

I'm glad to hear that this report was useful for you and your studies. I too learned this new term, IPV, which is a widespread issue for women. It's terrifying to know that so many women suffer sexual abuse in their own marriages, their own homes and beds.

I agree, that working to build platforms and open channels of support, communication and access to information for women to share their RH problems is key and a good first step to begin solving these issues.

In solidarity,
Jade

olutosin's picture

Shed More Light

Precious Jade,
There is an adage in my town that says, keeping mute is the beginning of ill luck, GBV and RH must be handled jointly, when a person accepts GBV as what God has written for her then RR or RH is sacrificed at the alter of culture, especially practices that surround female domination subordination, then one begin to hear horrible Religious quotation such as when you are married, your father handed you over to your husband and said 'I signed out while you sign in' therefore the woman's identity is subsumed in the man's....and the religious book says that two shall become one, so if he wants you, you must want him at that same time....you are one body one spirit, if he wants ten children, you do not have power over your body again...which really has several meanings and connotation......we must play along because it is two spirit/heart that beats as one...Most items i think that some teaching must just percolate deeper into a woman's soul...

The funniest part of IPV is that when we have decided to fight and support these violated women, that is when they back out and begin to send emissary to us that they do not want anything to happen to their husband and they are still the father of their children, we are we alive because of these children and sons cannot grow well without a father figure, couple with the fact that our society frowns at divorced women....We need to learn how to handle that area effectively,
Thanks Jade

Olutosin Oladosu Adebowale
Founder/Project Coordinator
Star of Hope Transformation Centre
512 Road
F Close
Festac Town
Lagos-Nigeria

https:

jadefrank's picture

Be the change

Dearest Olutosin,

You're right - when women lack the strength or support to follow through in their convictions, the cycle continues and change is stifled. And it's our society that supports that lack of follow-through - so it's a social issue that we all need to work on together.

Hugs,
Jade

gunu_k's picture

Making Men More Sensitive

Dear Olutosin,
you have hit the nail on the head by writing about the way in which women are bound by family responsibilities and prevented from revolting to the point of divorce. The answer is to sensitise men more to the problems being faced by women. Normally men tend to vent their own frustrations arising from work place problems on women in the household. Women who are not independently earning are at a disadvantage in this regard. So it is imperative for the women's movement to reach out to men and try and sensitise them.

Subhadra Khaperde
India

olutosin's picture

CLOSER TO THE POINT

Yes friend, that is where the issue of power comes in, an adage in Africa says my boss has a boss...it is a chain, this I learn recently, when a man who is married has a boss that is frustrating him, the wife at home has double problem, when the husband's boss is sad and vent his anger on her husband, her husband becomes sad and directs his retaliation his wife, she receives double and when she complains that the suffering is double, we say she does not know how to take care or pet a man whereas there are many unfortunate women looking for a husband and will snatch him away, our Pastors' favorite phrase........forgetting that the woman in question may have a boss like the one I had before I decided not to share in another woman's hypertension and I ran away when I FOUND SOLACE AND FRIENDSHIP on WORLD PULSE, not all women will be lucky......

This is not the end of the rode......We are not hopeless...women are long suffering not so?
You guys on World pulse rock! I learn everyday here

Olutosin Oladosu Adebowale
Founder/Project Coordinator
Star of Hope Transformation Centre
512 Road
F Close
Festac Town
Lagos-Nigeria

https:

Insha Allah's picture

Learning and Sharing

Dear Jade and all who posted your fruitful discussions,

I also have to learn a lot especially about IPY although it was very used to me through personal experiences. I won't never forget in my life that my mom's pale face at a night in hospital last ten years. It was second time of her abortions. As a young kid, I didn't know and understand about those critical issues. Later on in my life, I had to know that although they both together possessed having pregnant (two spirit/heart that beats as one), the dad didn't want to have more children based on a lot of reasons especially finance. So in our family, I would say that we killed two children.
Even in last month, I talked with a woman who is suffering post abortion disorder. This was 9th of her children and she'd already had eight ones and some of them even have children. She was so sad and felt shame. Up to your discussion, she hasn't got any proper suggestions and actions for the prevention. Medical doctors in our team and I supported her.
All your discussions are exactly the same what I am facing in my community.
We are not hopeless and helpless.
Let's make a change.

With Love,
Pollen@Shwe Wutt Hmon
Myanmar

Shwe Wutt Hmon

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